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An Exquisite Vintage Wedding with Lace, Pearl and Wood

“We wanted the wedding to look a bit vintage with lace, pearl and wooden details.”

Bride and groom full names: Eimear Linehan and Cain Steele

Length of engagement: 1 year 7 months

Wedding Date: 23rd September 2017

Wedding location: BrookLodge, Macreddin Village

Photographer: The Fennells

The proposal…

In February 2016, Cain surprised me on a snowboarding holiday in Meribel, France. He managed to sneak the ring and a bottle of champagne to the very top of the ski slope, where he popped the question. He caught me completely by surprise and I was over the moon.  We took some pics, polished off the champagne and snowboarded down to the next town to celebrate. Even a couple of wrong turns in a blizzard and a fall couldn’t dampen our mood…. Maybe the bottle of champagne at the top of the mountain wasn’t the best idea 🙂

The Planning…

We gave ourselves plenty of time to plan the wedding. All the big things were booked a year in advance so we never felt under too much pressure. We were lucky to receive lots of help from our families, particularly in the few weeks prior to the wedding.

Our wedding theme/colours…

We wanted the wedding to look a bit vintage with lace, pearl and wooden details. We tried to stick to mostly neutral colours like taupe, dusty pink and cream, and had lots of greenery. I wanted to incorporate some Irish language so we had a reading in Irish during the ceremony and the band we chose, Carouse, added a traditional element.

Cain’s sister, Rebekah, designed our wedding invites. We liked the image of the lanterns on the pink sky so much that we used it for all of the materials for the wedding – ceremony leaflets, table plan, menus and table numbers.

The Venue and how was it decorated…

We asked the florist to cover the bridge on the way to the chapel with greenery and some small flowers. We were so happy with how it turned out and we think it looks great in the photos.

My nephews, Cian and Eoghan, were ring bearers. My mam made the ring cushion, which Cian carried and Eoghan had a horse shoe.

For the reception, we printed out lots of old photos in black and white, and hung them on twine with little wooden pegs. We had our parents’ and grandparents’ wedding photos at the fireplace. There was a vintage postbox to collect any cards. Cain’s mum helped us with lots of extra details like signs, baskets and the sweets table. My mam made blankets and cushions for people to use outside on the deck.

On the tables, we had candelabras as the centerpieces. There were wooden place names and we left a disposable camera on each table for the guests to capture a few extra photos.

Cain’s sister, Naomi, made the cake,  a chocolate biscuit cake, covered in white chocolate fingers and white chocolate buttons. Naomi and Cain’s mum also made the cake toppers.

My dress…

One Saturday in November 2016, I went dress shopping with my Mam in Dublin. The second appointment of the day was with Sharon Hoey. I loved with dresses by Divine Atelier, which looked a bit more unusual and unique compared to anything else that I had seen. I chose “Ramia” which had lace sleeves and a floaty tulle skirt.

My hair and make up…

Anne from the International Make-up Academy, along with her colleague Donna Reid, did my make-up and the bridesmaids, mothers of the bride and mother of the groom. She uses an airbrush to apply the foundation which looks great for the photos.

Our hair was done by Claire Barry. I wanted my hair up so that the back of my dress could be seen and Claire helped me to pick a style that would suit me and the dress.

Anne and Claire were both really relaxed and friendly on the morning of the wedding which helped to create a lovely environment.  We were all delighted with how the hair and make-up looked and we were ready in plenty of time so there was no last minute panic.

His suit…

Cain chose a custom suit from Louis Copeland in Dundrum.  “Just married” was embroidered under the collar and our initials and wedding date were inside the jacket.

What our bridal party wore…

The four bridesmaids wore taupe chiffon floor-length dresses, which were ordered online from JJ’s House. They all wore a necklace from Enibas, an Irish designer, which said Croí álainn.

Our ceremony…

We had a humanist wedding ceremony in the chapel at BrookLodge. We met with our humanist celebrant, Amy Browne, a few times before the wedding. Both of us really enjoyed working with her. She helped us to plan every detail of the ceremony and made sure that everything ran smoothly on the day.

We worked with the band to choose music for the ceremony. We had some traditional instrumentals, mixed with some of our favourite songs (Shelter by Ray LaMontagne, How Long Will I Love You by the Waterboys). The ceremony ended on an upbeat note with Baby I love you by the Ramones.

We chose our venue because…

We chose BrookLodge at Macreddin Village because of the lovely chapel onsite. I knew that it would be the perfect setting for our ceremony.  We also loved Brookhall which has high ceilings with wooden rafters and balconies.

We had heard that the food was delicious and that the staff were excellent (which was all true!). It was a pleasure to work with Monika and Sinead in the lead up to the wedding. Everything was stress-free and very well organised.

We chose our photographer because…

The staff at BrookLodge recommended The Fennells to us. When we first met Mark, we hadn’t put too much thought into the photography and neither of us had a clear idea of what we wanted. Mark put us at ease immediately and gave us lots of great tips. He explained all the options and the different styles. We knew that Mark and Fiona would have everything under control.

We met Mark again closer to the wedding to discuss the photos that we wanted and the exact plans for the day. I had spotted one shot on their website (a couple at night in the rain with an umbrella) and we were hoping that we could get something like. We even bought a white umbrella just in case! As the band was getting going, Mark and Fiona came to let us know it was raining! We couldn’t find the umbrella but we threw a jacket over my head, ran outside, took the picture in the carpark and were back inside on the dance floor within minutes. Nobody even noticed we were gone and it’s our favourite shot of them all.

My favourite part of the wedding day…

The music played a really big part of the day for us. The band, Carouse, helped to make the ceremony really special for us and they kept everyone entertained at the drinks reception.

We’re big fans of Bellx1 so we were delighted that Carouse were willing to learn one of our favourite songs (Upswing) for our first dance. They kept the dancefloor full to the very last song with everything from the Pogues to the Prodigy – all with their own traditional spin.


Photography: The Fennells | The Dress: Divine Atelier, Sharon Hoey | Shoes: Jenny Packham, Debenhams | Earrings: Jules Bridal Jewellery | Groom’s suit: Louis Copeland, Dundrum | Wedding bands: Bannon’s Jeweler, Bray | Bridesmaids’ dresses: JJs House | Hair: Claire Barry | Make-up: The International Makeup Academy | Venue: BrookLodge, Macreddin Village | Music: Carouse Music | Flowers: Irish Flowers | Vintage postbox: My Wedding Store | Wooden place names: VM Bespoke | Disposable cameras: Favour Lane


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Kelly Jane Hartmann

Kelly is a former wedding planner and a lover of anything pink. She believes that any bride can plan her own wedding, with a few tips and helpful tools.

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